Students from Vinica restored benches and beautified the public space

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In a pleasant and productive atmosphere, the students from Vinica organized a youth action, supported by the Municipality of Vinica and the USAID Youth Ethnic Integration Project, implemented by the Macedonian Civic Education Center (MCEC) in cooperation with the Youth Educational Forum.

By respecting the protection protocols, the students from the primary schools “Goce Delcev”, “Koco Racin”, “Slavco Stojmenski” and “Nikola Parapunov” and from the high school “Vanco Prke”, together with their teachers-mentors, restored, repaired and painted benches in the technical workshop in the high school “Vanco Prke”. In order to beautify the school yard of the only high school in the municipality so that the young people would have a pleasant space for socializing and interaction, part of the restored benches were placed in the school yard, and the rest will be taken to the rural areas near Vinica.

In addition, on the wall in the yard, a mural was painted which shows the importance of mutual respect and cooperation. In this way, the students contributed to the protection and beautification of the environment, but also improved their practical skills.

“We had a great time. This is a lot of fun. Together, we painted the benches and the walls and we arranged the yard of the high school. We all worked together to contribute to this”, say the students.

During the action, they were joined by the USAID North Macedonia Country Representative, Erik Janowsky, who talked to them about what they had learned from the entire process of planning and implementation of the youth action.

He said, “It is impressive to see how the whole community is involved in this action. The kids have gathered from various schools to contribute to the community project by restoring and painting benches and painting a mural. This is a wonderful partnership with young people which is led by them and I am glad to see that youth are engaged and empowered to have their voice heard at the municipal level.”

He also met with the Mayor of Vinica, Mile Petkov and the director of the high school, Tihomir Tasev, with whom he discussed about the manners in which the municipality will continue to support young people and their initiatives, as well as the plans for cooperation with the schools aimed at promotion of interethnic integration.

The action emerged from the priorities of the young people identified by them in the past period during the online workshops. They also cooperated with the local authorities, in front of which they presented their ideas and from which they obtained the necessary support for the realization of their ideas, emphasizing the importance of youth activism.

More youth actions will follow during which the students will continue to improve the situation in their communities.

This activity is part of the Youth Ethnic Integration Project, supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

This article is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The contents are the responsibility of MCEC and do not necessarily reflect the views of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) or the United States Government.